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Odessa, Texas

Odessa, Texas was established in 1881 as a stop on the Texas and Pacific Railroads. It has been said that Odessa's name originated from and area that resembled our region around the Russian city in Ukraine named Odessa . The unsurpassed beauty of the West Texas sunsets and a climate that is warm and inviting make this uncommon city a true paradise. Odessa is also well known for its hospitality, and people with deep appreciation of colorful past and enthusiasm for a future rich with possibilities. Odessa is a city where cowboys, culture, oil and everything in between bring visitors a flavor so delicious it can only be described as "A City of Contrasts."

Odessa is located in Ector County, approximately midway between Ft. worth and El Paso, covering an area of 35.04 square miles. This area is called the Permian Basin . The Permian Basin is approximately 250 mile wide and 300 miles long. The basin was formed during the Permian Period, the final portion of the Paleozoic Era approximately 280 million years ago. A shallow sea, known as the Permian Sea, which was densely populated with life, once covered the Permian Basin. As the ocean dried up, the decaying plants and animals eventually helped form the gigantic pools of oil and gas that are still being taken from the basin. Three of the stateís major land resources meet here- the High Plains, Trans Pecos and Edwardís Plateau.

Located in a region where the Comanche Indians once roamed, Odessa ís history as a settlement can be traced to the 1881 extension of the Texas and Pacific Railway across the south plains and the need to provide water for the steam engines. The availability of cheap land encouraged settlers to the area from 1879 to 1885. The first ranchers arrived in 1885, but it was the railroad that made Odessa vital to the cattle industry. By the mid 1890ís Odessa was an established cattle shipping center.

When oil was discovered in 1926, the destiny of the community took a different course. This discovery brought people of varied interests and occupations to the area, and the local economy began to change from a ranching base into an industrial one.

Today, Odessa is alive and thriving, although oil and gas still remain our largest industry the city has begun to diversify. Odessa is quickly being recognized as a major health industry hub with three hospitals, a cancer center and several medical specialists in the area.

Attractions and Upcoming Events


Largest Jack Rabbit

The "World's Largest Jack Rabbit" was first pioneered by former Attorney General John Ben Shepperd during his term as Odessa Chamber of Commerce president in 1962

Odessa, TX One Of A Kinds


The Globe Theatre

A bit of Elizabethan England comes to life during the Odessa Shakespeare Festival at The Globe Theatre of the Great Southwest, Shakespearean Library & Anne Hathaway Cottage, modeled after Shakespeare'

Odessa, TX Theatres

White-Pool House Museum

Built in 1887, the White-Pool House Museum is the oldest structure of importance in Odessa, Texas. Built by Charles and Lucy White, it resembled the house they left behind in Indiana. Exhibits give the public an opportunity to view and learn about different periods in Odessa'

Odessa, TX Museums

Things to do near Odessa, TX

Million Barrel Museum

The Million Barrel Museum was built in 1928 as oil-storage facility. When operational, the tank stored a million barrels of c...

Wild Burros roaming free for viewing, learning about and photographing.

There is a small relic herd of wild burros found roaming within the Big Bend Ranch State Park in Texas. These herds were onc...

Sunset Country Club -Regulation

Course Access: Semi-PrivateHoles: 18Reserve Advance Tee Times: 2 days...